I almost titled this post “Things saving my life this winter,” and then realized that it’s a bit early in the season to do a post that is about winter. Technically it is still autumn and won’t be winter for several more weeks. But we’ve had two snows already, and while the trees are still mostly glorious colors, it feels very winter-y outside, most days. So, I settled on the compromise of late autumn.
A candle as night falls
I usually light candles very often in the darker days of the year, but the last few days I’ve deliberately lit a taper on my kitchen window sill to burn as night comes. It feels like a gentle resistance to the lack of long sunshine, and makes it feel less eerie as November nights sometimes do. It’s a really simple thing, but it has lightened my spirits so much in the evenings.
Slow morning routine
Clearly these are not in chronological order. But this fall Marshall has been leaving early nearly every weekday. (Between 5-7 AM, usually. Which I realize is normal and not early for a lot of people.) Mornings have often been our time together, but this schedule makes that less frequent. So I’ve been trying to stay slow and consistent in my routine both to get myself going and also so that I have an “automatic” when I feel a little disoriented from the dark quiet house so early in the morning. Usually it involves coffee, the Bible Recap reading plan, five minutes of prayer journal, reading in my current inspirational-type book, and then a very light workout before I shower.
While I do love the somewhat slower pace of the cold months, something that I’m realizing is helping me stay motivated and less claustrophobic, is keeping a full schedule, even if it’s a “relaxed full” schedule. If I have a meeting to attend, a coffee date with a friend, or a school date with Marshall, I can usually wake up and get going so much more readily rather than dragging myself through my day and feeling sleepy.
I wish there was Vitamin D candy, because I would eat it all winter. Instead, I swallow tiny Vitamin D pills, usually morning and night, and I almost always notice a difference in my energy and motivation levels. Skeptics might say it’s just the placebo effect—but I definitely don’t care if it means I have energy in the winter.
Some parts of me pull back and dread these days, but making lists like this help me remember what’s good and that there ARE things that are saving my life, even in this late autumn winter. That’s all, for now. It’s snowing outside, as I write this, and the red maple leaves look like they’ve been dusted with powdered sugar.
What is saving your life?